Built in the 1960s as an engineering marvel, the Aswan High Dam changed the face of Egypt by increasing the cultivable land by 30% and doubling the country's available electricity supply. The dam also created what was then the world's largest artificial lake: Lake Nasser. This body of water would have covered the important Abu Simbel Temple monuments if not for support from UNESCO and a worldwide appeal for funds to move them to higher ground, a massive feat that was eventually successful.
The dam itself is massive, containing 18 times the material used to build the Great Pyramid of Giza (Khufu). At 11,811 feet long (3,600 meters) and 364 feet tall (111 meters), the Aswan High Dam provides visitors with wonderful views up and down the Nile River.
The dam is near Aswan, at one end of Lake Nasser. It is best visited by organized tour that also allows for exploring other nearby sites.